Our Holiday Traditions - By Denola M. Burton:
Our family has had what I would consider a “traditional” Christmas holiday for as long as I can remember and the funny thing is that some of the things that I can recall as a child, have continued into my current family traditions. There are so many ways to celebrate the holiday season that don’t involve money and giving gifts. Of course, our family does give gifts – as an expression of our love and sharing that love through gift-giving. But, it’s much more than that. I’d like to share a few of our traditions that have carried on into my own family creating new traditions.
Ornaments: Each year, each family member receives a new ornament that is picked especially for them. Mine is usually dated so that I have something to remember that year. In 2020, it seemed only fitting to have the “pandemic memory” including the sanitizer, face masks and toilet paper shortage! I'm so glad we are BEYOND THAT!
2021 led me to this cute ornament that reminds my girls that they will always have each other! Sisters are tied together with Heartstrings.
Interestingly enough, I got Lenox ornaments for 2022 but I haven't unpacked them yet this year. Even though my tree is up, I feel like I need to wait for the girls to come home from college before I add the specific ornaments to the tree. One of the highlights is that each person unpacks their own ornaments (because they all all dated and labeled) and they place their specific ornaments on the tree. It is so much fun remembering where we got each specific ornament or who gave it to us. Now that the girls are accumulating quite a stash, their ornaments are carefully stored in their own boxes – ready for the next year, but especially ready for the day that they have their own home and a Christmas tree of their own. What a great way to start off their own Holiday traditions!
Baking Christmas Cookies: I’ve never been known to be a big baker, but I love to bake cookies for Santa. This year, my girls are 19 and 23 and they are STILL looking forward to baking cookies and setting them out for Santa to enjoy. Now that both girls are away at college, I can't wait for them to come home so we can begin our holiday baking! We know that we aren't experts, but we sure have fun!
Family Time: Yes, I think we all feel that the entire holiday season is better with family and it is important to pivot and shift in order to make the best of the time with our families. 2020 was a challenging year for family get-togethers and we are still gradually getting back into the swing of family gatherings. I am excited that we will be able to have our traditional family gathering this year. I am anxious about the fact that our girls will have limited holidays at home as they mature and spread their wings!
Christmas Movies: I’m not sure if this is my tradition or my family’s tradition, but I try to watch every Christmas movie that comes across my television screen. It’s getting harder and harder to round up the crew to watch them with me but I hope that I have instilled the value of the Christmas stories, the love, the family time and the “real meaning of Christmas” that is the theme of many of these movies (like one of my favorites, "It's a Wonderful Life".
Whether new or old, holiday traditions are special and involve family. Maybe when my girls are grown and gone from home, they will look back and remember these traditions and start traditions of their very own. So now I need to ask, "What are your holiday traditions?"
Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year!
Denola M. Burton is the Founder and CEO of Enhanced DNA: Develop Nurture Achieve, LLC and Enhanced DNA Publishing. Through Enhanced DNA, Denola develops and nurtures individuals and organizations to achieve their Leadership, Communication and Performance goals and objectives. Denola is also an author and publisher and through Enhanced DNA Publishing, assists new and newer authors in publishing their books according to the Independent Book Publishing Association (IBPA) standards. Denola retired from Eli Lilly and Company after 27 years where the majority of her career was focused on Employee Relations/Human Resources. You can connect with Denola on Facebook, Instagram, LinkedIN and Twitter at Enhanced DNA or send a message to DenolaBurton@EnhancedDNA1.com. Denola is married to her husband, Phil and they just celebrated 30 years together. They have two daughters, Danielle and Ciara (oh, and we can't forget the grandpuppy, Mocha)!